Saving little hearts in Fiji – 14 Successful Child Surgeries at Sai Sanjeevan Hospital

Fourteen children have had successful heart surgeries in November 2023 at the San Sanjeevani Children’s Hospital.

Hospital director, Dr Kurpali Tappoo said a 20-member visiting team of surgeons and specialists was able to carry out these successful procedures which included a child from the Solomon Islands.

“Surgeons, doctors and specialists from Czech Republic, Slovenia, Slovakia, United Kingdom and Australia visited the Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Children’s Hospital and performed free heart surgeries for the children of Fiji and the South Pacific Islands.”

The team was led by accomplished pediatric cardiac surgeon Dr Roman Gebauer, from the University Hospital Motol in the Czech Republic.

“Dr. Roman Gebauer spearheaded the team. The team received invaluable support and assistance from the staff of Sai Sanjeevani Hospital, Colonial War Memorial Hospital and Labasa Hospital. This visit was made possible through the support of NGO’s Healing Little Hearts from the United Kingdom and Health in Kind Australia.

“The team worked tirelessly and invested extensive hours to make a meaningful impact, ultimately saving fourteen lives during the visit. All the heart surgeries were performed successfully. In fact, during this round of surgeries, a young child from the Solomon Islands, if not operated on immediately, wwould have succumbed. Many surgeries performed were more complex in nature such as very large Ventricular septal defects, Tetralogy of Fallot, aortic valve repair and ALCAPA.”

Since being in operation in April 2022 the hospital has hosted nine visiting teams from various countries and has conducted 14,096 child heart screenings and 260 heart surgeries.

“We are deeply grateful to the entire international visiting surgical team for volunteering their time and services in saving little hearts in Fiji and the South Pacific Islands.”

All the surgeries are free of charge.

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